Shrine with figure of Zhenwu

This celadon-jade shrine has a seated figure of Zhenwu with elaborately carved decorations. Zhenwu is the Dark Emperor, the Daoist Lord of the Night Sky. He is associated with the snake, and the tortoise, ruler of the north, which is seen emerging from beneath his feet.Longquan wares are famous for their thick green glazes, also known as 'celadon' glaze which was much admired in China for its jade-like qualities.Longquan greenwares were exported in large quantities to many parts of Asia from around the Southern Song (1127-1279) onwards. They became an important exchange commodity and substitute for dwindling copper cash reserves in China during this time. These greenwares were valued in Southeast Asia as suggested by extensive finds at Philippines burial sites and their use as heirlooms by the Dayaks in Sarawak. Sherds have also been found at Fort Canning in Singapore.

Date/Period
Late Yuan dynasty (1279-1368)
Region
Longquan, Zhejiang province, China
Dimension
Object size: 23.7 x 15.2 x 6.4 cm
Accession No.
1995-02382
Collection of
Asian Civilisations Museum
Credit Line
Gift from Jurong Town Corporation
Category
Ceramics